Policy and Guidelines for Conducting Educational Research in the Boston Public Schools
OverviewThe basic purpose of the Boston Public Schools (BPS) is to educate children. All other objectives, however worthy, are only secondary to this goal. It’s the policy of the school system, therefore, to authorize only those research projects that could be of benefit to the BPS when a review shows that that the subject area being studied is aligned with the goals of improved teaching and learning while not unduly taking away from instructional time and BPS resources. Approval by the researcher’s IRB and/or the building administrators of BPS schools does NOT guarantee approval by the Office of Data and Accountability (ODA).
All research activities must be coordinated through the Office of Data and Accountability. In some instances approval is not required for the use of data and summary statistics available in public records such as on the BPS Website, in published paper and electronic reports, and hard-copy listings of aggregated student and staff data. In these instances, the researcher may use the data presented in the reports as long as the sources is cited and any modifications or analysis done by the researcher is clearly delineated.
Who May Conduct Research
Any academic or professional organization or any individual doing doctoral work may submit a proposal to conduct research. Doctoral candidates must submit written evidence that their proposed research has been approved by their University’s IRB and will be supervised by their advisor(s).